Favas are very popular in the Algarve, Portugal’s southernmost province. There they are cooked in water, drained, and sautéed with bacon, blood sausages, seasoned with mint, and served as a casserole. In other parts of the country, favas are cooked in water, flavoured with coriander and mint, but not drained. Both blood and pork sausage are added and served with lettuce seasoned with onion, coriander, olive oil, and vinegar.

The following is a Cape Verdean version of the Portuguese original. Begin preparing the dish a day in advance because the beans must be soaked overnight.


1½ cups dried fava beans

1 large onion

¼ cup vegetable oil

2 medium tomatoes, chopped

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups rice

1 pound chouriço (smoked sausage), thinly sliced


Soak fava beans overnight in cold water to cover plus 3 inches. The following day drain the beans, peel off the outer shell,  cover with fresh water and cook for 1 hour. Slice the onions thinly and place in a large skillet with vegetable oil. Cook the onion until it is transparent, then add the chopped tomatoes, 4 cups water, salt, and the drained fava beans. Bring to a boil and add the rice and the sausage. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 25 minutes.

Serve with tuna steaks and cooked manioc.

Cook’s Notes: If you like hot spicy foods, when you add water to the dish add 1 teaspoon or more of crushed red peppers. Mix well.


Serves 6 - 8.


country : Cape Verde

course : rice dish


source : Cuisines of Portuguese Encounters / Cherie Y. Hamilton


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